5 replies · posted

Sketchfab and Epic

reducing Sketchfab’s store fees to 12%  GREAT!


4.2.1 Use by us. By using the Services, you grant Sketchfab a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, fully paid-up, perpetual, irrevocable, sub-licensable (through multiple tiers) right and license to use, reproduce, publicly display, distribute, adapt, create derivative works of and otherwise exploit User Content for any and all purposes, including, without limitation, the purposes of providing, developing and improving the Services; provided that to the extent User Content includes personal data, we shall not use such personal data for any purpose other than providing the Services and as further set forth in our Privacy Policy at You further grant Sketchfab the right to use your name and trademarks, if any, in connection with our use of your publicly shared User Content for the purposes set forth in this Section 

I do not agree with this

  • I just logged on to mention this to people in case they hadn't seen it. 

    They're also heavily moderating anyone mentioning it in their forum spaces.  

    It seems extremely sketchy (pun not intended). They also force you into agreeing to the ToS to delete your account, thus giving them rights to your stuff before you delete it.

    ... when is CG Cookie developing a web based 3d model viewer? 😅

  • crew

    I went to go read it myself because I had a hard time believing that was  quoted word for word, but they literally say "and otherwise exploit User Content for any and all purposes".  

    My guess is that they want to be able to provide the models in the store through a subscription or something similar and I would highly doubt they would do that without compensating the creators, so I'm not particularly concerned. It would also be one hell of a data set to feed into a machine learning algorithm, and I wouldn't be shocked if they were getting the rights to do exactly that.

    That said, I also don't really care that much about anything I've uploaded on there. They want to use my mediocre example files for something? Go ahead 😄 If it was the basis of my portfolio that I worked for years on, or if I was uploading models of my own IP, or I was hoping to make a living off of their marketplace, then I would certainly have a lot of questions and I could see how it would be rather upsetting. As a general rule, uploading anything to any service (especially a free one) is something to be careful of if you're concerned about retaining full and exclusive rights to your work. 

    • crew

      I also had to go check it out, looks like a disgruntled employee wrote this. 

      They say no one reads the T&C's, even the boss didn't read this before releasing it.

      No matter their intentions, a very poor choice of words.

  • My creative work isn't really my concern here,  but during grad school I made a lot of photogrammetric models where the ethics get kind of weird with this ToS. 

    3D models of cultural objects have become a great tool for public outreach,  but a large number of academics (at least in archaeology) aren't very tech savvy. As a result,  sketchfab is honestly the best way to get a 3d model to someone who isn't very capable with a computer. Its also the best tool out there (that I'm aware of) for museums to seamlessly share 3d models if collections with the public.  This handles a huge problem museums have faced over the last decade regarding exhibition space, and getting access to people who can't afford to travel to museums.  It also acted as a work around during covid19 -- during which museums started digitizing their collections at a greater pace. 

     I personally had a lot of professors asking me to build things for them,  but they couldn't be bothered to use anything other than web to view them.  This resulted in a me uploading a number of private models. 

    So the ToS isn't  of much consequence to my personal stuff,  but I'm reluctant to just hand away rights to things that are related to someone else's ongoing research. 

    But jlampel, you raise a VERY interesting point / dilemma regarding this data set. A large number of major institutions have uploaded scans of iconic classic works, as well as things like early hominid bones.  These things are private data sets that as a researcher,  I know getting access to them is often not so easy.  Having full access to the data set for the purpose of AI would let them create tools that do shit like,  make a new classic sculpture in the style of ancient Greek masters. 

    Either way,  I guess I'm saying that as an individual,  its not that problematic for me. But their client base has a lot of institutions where this gets very concerning. 

  • crew

    I didn't even think about the museum and institutional part of this. It's extremely cool that some of them are publishing the 3d models for free, but I'm sure that not every institution will want to share everything like you mentioned. I'll be curious to see what happens!